Scarborough Open Air Theatre’s stellar season of live music continued on Monday evening with the arrival of jazz supremo Gregory Porter. The Grammy Award-winning performer follows in the footsteps of the likes of Status Quo, Tom Jones and Simple Minds, who have already graced the stage of the venue this year.

And whilst Mother Nature didn't get the memo about the outdoor concert, a little bit of rain wasn't going to stop music lovers from arriving in their droves to the North Yorkshire coastal town. Ponchos and waterproof jackets saved the day for many as light rain fell throughout JP Cooper's warm-up set.

Thankfully, the rain stopped just before the headliner took to the stage. Porter received a warm welcome from the Scarborough crowd as he opened the proceedings with Holding On. The dapper gentleman was bedecked in a light green jacket, white trousers, and his signature headwear.

The artist was joined onstage by an extremely talented six-piece ensemble, which included a pianist, a keyboard player, a drummer, a double bass player and a three-piece horn section.

A beautiful and heartfelt airing of Hey Laura featured early in the set. Whilst Porter upped the ante with the funky sounds of Liquid Spirit. The singer’s voice was as smooth as silk.

As one would expect from such esteemed musicians, there were plenty of opportunities for improvisation and jamming throughout the show, particularly during songs such as On My Way to Harlem. Collectively, the sounds of Gregory Porter and the band transported the Scarborough audience to a speakeasy club or Manhattan piano bar.

Porter seemed to be quite taken back by Scarborough. In advance of the show, people told him how beautiful the town was. And he joked that en route to the venue, he was tempted to pop into a cosy pub to escape the rain.

The artist's poignant words before each song really struck a rapport with the audience. However, he also can make the audience laugh, particularly when he noticed a patron returning to their seat with food, and he joked – 'Give me one of those French Fries'. Much to the audience's amusement.

There were many musical highlights of the set including the rather poetic No Love Dying, during which Porter’s powerful voice filled the Open Air Theatre. And a showstopping performance of Take Me To The Alley.

With no real set list per se, Gregory and company let the show go wherever the wind took them. During a bass solo, impromptu covers of My Girl and Papa Was a Rolling Stone unfolded to great effect.

But they weren’t the only covers of the evening. Porter paid homage to the great Nat King Cole by way of his take on Mona Lisa. He commented that in his youth he would pretend that Nat King Cole was his father. Of course, he made an album in 2017 called Nat King Cole and Me in honour of him.

On Monday evening, Gregory Porter put on a show that delighted the Scarborough audience and even managed to appease Mother Nature, who thankfully stopped the rain shortly before he took the stage.

The beauty of watching Gregory Porter live is that the band take you on a musical journey. You don’t just get to hear the songs as they are heard on the artist’s albums, but they truly come to life in the live environment.

Scarborough Open Air Theatre’s live season continues with the likes of Rick Astley, Fatboy Slim, Paul Weller and much more. For further information, please visit: